Patchwork Planning

Which is as far as it’ll go with me… but what fun is this section of the V&A website.
I’m enjoying loading up holiday photographs and seeing how they turn out. Here is one of the lions in Trafalgar Square:

And patchworked:

Found via the dovegreyreader.


Ahhhh… sweet internet-y goodness.

After a week without the internet, I wonder how we did it before. I didn’t think I was that dependent on it, but when the line suddenly failed, I had panicky calls from relatives, I couldn’t do the groceries (yes, I do that online, it’s awesome, and someone else carries it all up my stairs), I couldn’t check my diary, and worst of all… I couldn’t google the weird things Harriet was doing to see if they were normal. So we’ve been a hungry, disorganised, strangely behaved family; or more so than usual.

Strange rainy day today, very soft and grey outside, and all the tin roofs look right at home in the clouds. It’s one of many wet days recently and there’s been a lot of knitting to keep my fingers warm.

I’ve been cabling like mad and finished about a third of this Drops Pattern, which is a huge relief because now I’m into the easier knitting and don’t have to keep back tracking to fix my mistakes.

Also, I’ve had my hair cut, and the new flapper-meets-street-urchin look is calling for headbands. Taking my inspiration from here, I’ve come up with something that suits me, and the weather.

Bring on the rain, Wellington.


Not my day knitting-wise today… This vest from Drops is the largest project I’ve tried, and although I’m a pretty competent knitter, I’m pretty terrible at reading charted knitting patterns. I much prefer words, which may be why/because I was an English teacher. If a patten says ‘slip two stitches onto a needle behind the piece, then…’, I am far more likely to not spend my afternoon frogging my knitting. There’s nothing more demoralising when you’re using 3 ply.

But.. what do you think of the colours? The slate-ly navy for a vest and the moss green (it’s less lime in real life) for the hat/scarf combo. I had originally thought the other way round, but thought Harriet might become Friar Tuck if I put her in a Band of Merry Men style jerkin.
Also not my day for mail…

The baby got it. And then the whole thing was too cute to stop… so I grabbed the camera instead. Hoping the letter from the bank was a statement, and nothing important, ‘cos it’s just one slobbery mass now.
I am pleased to report though, there is now only half a sleeve left to do on my burgundy jersey, and I’ve found some awesome ribbon for the closure in Magnolia on College St. Getting quite excited about my idea, but clearly not excited enough to finish the damn thing!

Mountains, oh mountains o’things

I have a sad, sore, out of sorts babe who was immunised this morning, teething and waking in the night starving, and so the things are mounding up…



Short stories I am trying to read for inspiration. It’s very slow in coming, and just leads to admiration (ahem… jealousy…) of other people’s cleverness. There is a very cool short story of Eleanor Catton’s in the latest issue of Sport, and another by Bernadette Hall, which features an English teacher named Laura. Since she was my tutor last year, I couldn’t help reading with fascination. Of course, any story that uses my name is a winner with me, whether it’s The Garden Party, or Twin Peaks.

Horrible, terrible, no good, very dreary day

At least weather-wise… so I’m just going to refresh my memory of how lovely Wellington is with these shots from last weekend:

If there are two things Wellington does well, it’s weather and amazing public art. I love the way these things are placed to make you reevaluate the physical place, and the way they are just there. There’s no sense of fanfare or ‘look at me’, but just beautiful things that fit into their surroundings, so much so that you couldn’t imagine the place without them.

New jersey

I’ve finished another one in a 9 month size. It’s making up for this burgundy jumper that is still on the needles. I have finished the back, front and half a sleeve, but then I bought this lovely soft green wool and this book, although using hideous wool, has quite simple patterns  that knit up very quickly, and so I was tempted away. Poor burgundy jumper. I even have a very cool plan for its closures, but might not ever get there. I blame it on the wool. It’s gorgeous merino, but I bought it on sale, and the colour isn’t what I’d ordinarily go for.

Here is Harriet in the pink ballet cardigan from here.

And after all these very simple things, I want to try this. I’ll knit it in the 12/18 month to give myself time! After all, I still have to find (and pay for…) the needles and wool for it. Sigh.


Finally a smidgeon of success, with thanks to the Sallies on Taranki St and Opportunity for Animals in Kilburnie.  All lovely autumn-y things…
A linen smock for Small:

An epaulette shirt I wish would fit me, but will fit Harriet shortly:

A 100% lambswool zip up J Crew sweater for me:

$9 well spent. Or at least I think so… Harriet doesn’t get a say yet!

Clap your hands…

…if you believe in fairies, or if you’ve just become exceedingly hooked on making them, even though your daughter won’t be able to play with them for another bazillion years because you’ve used seed beads and she could swallow them. Phew… long sentence!
These things are fun to make. They are surprisingly quick to put together and very rewarding, especially when your pile of half finished knitting seems to be getting bigger (not in the ‘finished’ way, in the ‘starting more’ way).
I only bought four bead though as I wasn’t sure whether these would work out. I’m onto my last fairy, Autumn, who might be my favourite.

There are a couple of places where I’m deviating from Salley Mavor’s instructions. It’s heap easier to get the petals onto the bodies if you slide them down the tops of the pipe cleaners after you’ve wrapped the legs, but before you fold or wrap the arms. This means you don’t have to cut such a big hole (and the petals stay up better), and you don’t have to struggle to get them over the hips. I’m also not wrapping the legs and arms as far as she suggests. The arms are hidden by the sleeves, and the tops of the legs are hidden as I’m putting a few stitches at the top of the petals to hold them together. This also means they won’t be pulled off by little hands. Not 5 month old hands, of course, the little hands Harriet will have in a bazillion years that won’t be tempted to put small pieces in her mouth!

Granty love

Ever since Harriet’s granty (great-aunty) sent me this book last week, I’ve been dying to get stuck in.

We live in a very small apartment with no outdoors, but it is really important to me that Harriet has a sense for nature as she grows up. I love the idea of a nature table (maybe like this), and I have a vision of a series of seasonal dolls to match.

The only problem was that when we moved several months ago, I cleared everything out in the name of economy. Now I’m in Wellington, and the op-shopping here is a very different thing to Christchurch, and my supply of old woollen jumpers in down south in a charity bin, I’m having to start again. As fun as stash building is, it does mean no just getting stuck in for me. A number of supply expeditions occurred, a few in the rain with Harriet in a sling. I’m still waiting for silk flowers but by today I had enough to be able to start making seasonal fairies. I started with Winter, for obvious reasons if you live in the Southern Hemisphere.

But I’ve been thinking about the colour schemes for Spring, Summer and Autumn, and while I wait for my silk flowers to arrive for the skirts and wings of the winter fairy, I might make a start on the others.

As an aside, I can’t do the faces like Salley Mavor suggests as the only beads I can find are varnished, and the paint wouldn’t stick. what do you think about leaving the face blank, or may just eyes with a fine tipped marker pen?